The unavailability of Devdutt Padikkal in the first game against Mumbai Indians due to COVID-19 positive report has put pressure on Virat Kohli. Now he has to decide that should he give a chance to the newcomer Muhammad Azhar ud Din or opt for the Kiwi batsman Finn Allen. By picking Finn Allen he has to lose an overseas player in the playing XI.
Devdutt Padikkal has been in a staggering touch and his absence will be a big blow to RCB. He scored 737 runs in the 7 innings he played in Vijay Hazare Trophy for Karnataka which includes three fifties and four hundreds. Padikkal also scored 473 runs in last edition of IPL in 15 matches at an average of 31.53. Kohli has already declared that he will be opening for RCB in the 14th edition of IPL.
It is not something new for RCB to find a settled opening pair. In the last edition they found Devdutt Padikkal but now in his absence RCB has to come up with a partner with Virat Kohli. Muhammad Azhar ud Din is a promising young talent who is a regular wicket keeper for Kerala in the longer formats. He was instrumental against Mumbai in Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy where he scored 137 off just 54 balls. With Azhar, RCB can take up an extra foreigner and can also give rest to AB de Villiers who is keeping the wickets for 20 years now.
On the other hand the Kiwi batsman Finn Allen has made his international debut against Bangladesh in the recently concluded series. In his debut game he returned to the pavilion with a golden duck but in the 3rd T20I he showed his true class by scoring 71 off 29 balls. Finn Allen can also put on the gloves like AB de Villiers. Finn’s selection can be a tricky one as according to the rules RCB can have only 4 foreigners in the playing XI. For Finn’s selection, RCB has to drop Glenn Maxwell or Dan Christian as AB de Villiers and Kyle Jamieson are the automatic choices for RCB.
RCB will come out with two spinners Washington Sundar and Yuzvendra Chahal and in their presence Maxwell could miss the first game if Finn Allen is in the eleven which looks very unlikely. Hence it is pretty much tilting towards Muhammad Azhar ud din for making IPL debut today.
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